Make your own free website on

About Trebuchets

Below are Responces I have made to articles I have found about Trebuchets at the bottom of this page there is a link toMy Research page where I have conducted book research and Original research.

What is a trebuchet? I did some research on it and I found an article by Paul Schmidt. Paul Schmidt is or was a teacher of industrial controls and microprocessors at the college level. He also is an engineer. He is a much credited person. I found his article “WarSerpent” trebuchet construction article. Although it mostly talks about how to make a trebuchet model, it gave really good information on what a trebuchet is, where it came from and how to make one.
The article explained that a trebuchet (pronounced tray-boo-shay) is a machine capable of hurling objects over a considerable distance relative to its size. The Europeans got the idea from china and brought it to France. It is operated by gravity. A trebuchet is like a catapult only it uses gravity rather than coiled rope. The first time I saw a trebuchet was on Northern Exposure.
How does it work? The trebuchet swings a projectile in a pouch with two strings both are attached to a lever arm with a counterweight on the other en and is thrown in a trajectory to gain momentum then one of the strings are let go and the projectile is thrown.
I am interested in engineering and the things that are made by them. At JEMS summer workshop, that I went to last summer, we engineered a trebuchet. It was so fun I want to do it again it. My team’s trebuchet was six feet high and threw a 3 pound weight about 40 feet. The counter weigh was about 50 pounds made of a concrete filled bucket. Building it helped me understand how engineers work. It inspired me to become an engineer.
Record Launch
A Professor of mechanical engineering at Weber State University wrote and article about trebuchets and a competition every fall semester among the freshman engineers. The article was Really Throwing It, a model of a medieval weapon sets a school record.
How much do students know about trebuchets? They learn how to design basic structures, how the mass of the counterweight and the length of the throwing arm affect the velocity and range of the projectile, and physics of projectile motion. They also learn history. King Edward I sieged Sterling Castle in1304. It also was used in biological warfare. Carolstein in 1422 dead bodies and manure were flung into the city to spread disease.
How far do they shoot? In the competition at Weber State the trebuchets are two feet tall and fire a base ball. Usually they only shoot from forty to one hundred feet. But fall semester of 2004 a team of freshmen engineers made a trebuchet that fired one hundred eighty- four feet!
I went to and engineering camp last summer, JEMS. We made trebuchets Ours were about six feet high and our counter weight was about fifty lbs imagine if we put 100 lbs on the trebuchet instead. Although it would have broken because we bent the first axis we had the first try and we had to get a new axis pipe. We constructed a miniature wall and tried to demolish it. There were points for hitting it and knocking part over and there were also lots of points for damaging the wall. We only got to about forty feet.

Time Turns Back To When Pigs Flew

When asking someone to do something for you and they say "When pigs fly," you can safely say that day is today. Trebuchets make this happen. Today's fascination with trebuchets is ever growing. "Giant Medieval War Machine Is Wowing British Farmers and Scaring the Sheep" an article written by Glynn Mapes, Staff Reporter of the Wall Street Journal, fully accounts how this is possible. The article has illustrated how the human's interest in history mixed with his creative thinking and his sense of entertainment will let humans change impossibility to possibility. But why would you build a trebuchet? Hew Kennedy, who lives 140 miles northwest of London, is an inventor and military historian. Mr. Kennedy built a full sized trebuchet replica that is four stories tall and weighs 30 tons. In the article an interview with Mr. Kennedy reveals Kennedy had built it mainly for "bloody good fun." He also expresses the last few attempts to build a trebuchet in history failed or were insufficient. In the summer of Last year I took an engineering course at the University of Idaho and built a trebuchet with a team of other students. We were learning about engineering and all the while having a blast making trebuchets. Building a trebuchet is really fun and it can also be really educational. How would you build it? To build a trebuchet you need to know physics and a lot of math. You need to know what materials to build what parts out of so that when you try firing it the trebuchet won't snap in half. There are four basic parts: the frame, the lever arm, the counter weight, and the sling. The sling is simple it is some sort of rope tied to the long end of the lever arm with a pouch in middle then a loop on the other end to again attach to the long end of the lever arm but is free to fly off at a given moment. The counter weight is basically a box with weight in it that can hinge around the short end of the lever arm. Or you could attach a fixed weight to the lever arm. The lever arm is basically a long pole attached to the frame with an axle about two thirds down one end of the arm. The frame is usually made of a base and two A-frame supports for the lever arm. I learned all this at the University of Idaho. Mr. Kennedy researched and made models before building his trebuchet. He now uses it for public amusement. I think that is a great idea I would pay to see pigs fly among other things. History is always making a comeback and filtering into today's world.

Responce Paper To "The Art of the Catapult" by William Gurstelle

Below is a paper I wrote after reading this book

Link to Research I have conducted

Back to Main Page